Even though a heliport is round there is still a clear approach and departure path. But they are not as clear as the runway paths at an airport. The Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) and the International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO) recommend an H in the center of the touchdown lift off (TLOF) area. Something which should also be included is an information box this tells you the maximum size helicopter that is allowed on that heliport.  This is bases on the overall length and diameter of the helicopters. 

Other markings that are common on an heliport are arrows to indicate the approach/departure path, radio frequency, magnetic north and company logo. If a heliport needs to operate at night the heliport need lighting installed. A few of those lights are; 

  • Heliport perimeter lights, those lights are installed flush with the ground on the TLOF area. These lights are standard a green color. 
  • Lighting should never cause an obstruction that can impact the helicopter. That is why light on the TLOF are not allowed to be higher then 2 inches. 
  • An other sort of light that could be used is a floodlight. These lights are not allowed to interfere with the heliport lights. The floodlights should be off during touchdown or lift off. These lights are mostly used for work on the ground at night.
  • A windsock is also required to have around a heliport. This is to help know the windspeed and direction. 
  • You also have HAPI, PAPI this is a guidance system that helpt the pilot to know how high of low the pilot needs to fly to land properly 

The helicopter needs to be able to land and takeoff safely that means without any obstructions in the approach and departure path. The FAA recommends to have two approach and departure paths. This is so that the pilot always has an unobstructed path to take. It is recommended to have these to paths 135 degrees apart from each other. 


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